Mars will be bigger and brighter in the night sky tonight

Throughout the month of July, the orbit of Mars and Earth will be aligned in a rare phenomenon known as perihelian opposition. This will see Mars appear bigger and brighter in the sky than in the last 15 years.

Stellar observers will be given a much clearer view of the red planet tonight, since Mars will appear bigger and brighter in the night sky than in the last 15 years.

Throughout the month of July, the orbits of Mars and Earth have been constantly aligned in a strange phenomenon known as "Perihelian opposition", which occurs when Mars, Earth and Sun align, with our planet in the middle.

As a result, Mars will appear almost three times larger than normal in the night sky.

According to NASA, the orbit of Mars only brings the red planet closer to Earth every 15 to 17 years, which means that the next time Mars is seen as prominent in the night sky will be September 15, 2035.

Astronomers from around the world will be able to see the red planet in all its splendor today, provided they have clear skies.

However, astronomers from the southern hemisphere will get the best view, since Mars will appear higher in the night sky.

The exact moment of the closest approach took place at 8:45 a.m. BST (3:45 a.m. EDT) on July 31, however, Mars was invisible to observers of amateur stars in Europe, Africa, Russia and Asia as it was daytime.

As the sun sets later today, July 31, those who look towards the night sky with nothing more than the naked eye will enjoy an amazing view of Mars.

The perihelica opposition arrives a few days after another impressive celestial event, the lunar eclipse "Moon of Blood", which saw people in Europe, Asia, Africa, parts of Australasia and South America treated with the lunar eclipse longest of this century, with our natural satellite taking a deep crimson tone in the process.

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Throughout the month of July, the orbit of Mars and Earth will be aligned in a rare phenomenon known as perihelian opposition. This will see Mars appear bigger and brighter in the sky than in the last 15 years.

Throughout the month of July, the orbit of Mars and Earth will be aligned in a rare phenomenon known as perihelian opposition. This will see Mars appear bigger and brighter in the sky than in the last 15 years.

As humanity prepares to land on Mars, the red planet orbits closer to Earth than it has in more than a decade. Known as Perihelian opposition, it means that Mars will appear larger than normal in the night sky

As humanity prepares to land on Mars, the red planet orbits closer to Earth than it has in more than a decade. Known as Perihelian opposition, it means that Mars will appear larger than normal in the night sky

As humanity prepares to land on Mars, the red planet orbits closer to Earth than it has in more than a decade. Known as Perihelian opposition, it means that Mars will appear larger than normal in the night sky

Dr. Mark Birkinshaw, Professor of Cosmology and Astrophysics at the University of Bristol, told MailOnline: "Mars is unusually close to Earth in the present – it's closest approximation on July 31, at 0.385 AU (35.7 million miles) / 57.5 million km). & # 39;

The Earth is separated from Mars by an asteroid belt, with the typical distance between the two planets sitting at around 140 million miles (225 million kilometers).

However, tonight it will fall to 35.78 million miles (57.59 million kilometers).

For those in the northern hemisphere, Mars will appear to rise in the east just as the sun sets in the west, making the sunlit side of the planet visible throughout the night.

Mars should be visible in the southeast, located just below the constellation of Sagittarius, with Saturn also nearby.

The best views will be visible in the hours before sunrise.

Those in the southern hemisphere will be treated with the best view of the Perihelian opposition, since the red planet will appear higher in the night sky.

HOW TO SEE MARS IN THE NIGHT SKY, AS THE RED PLANET GOES CLOSER TO THE EARTH THAN THE REGULAR

On July 27, Mars will pass closer to Earth than it has for 15 years.

The phenomenon, known as perihelic opposition, will make the red planet appear larger and brighter than normal in the night sky.

The rare event occurs when Mars reaches its closest point to the sun, at the same time that Earth's orbit takes it directly between the two.

Although the true opposition point will take place on July 27, Mars will be noticeably greater during most of the month of July.

The perihelic opposition can be seen with the naked eye, which means that there is no need for expensive equipment for astronomers to discover the rare event next month.

It will darken Jupiter, registering about 1.8 times brighter in the night sky.

Mars will be up all night, rising after sunset and setting at dawn.

Stargazers hoping to see the red planet from the northern hemisphere should control the sky in the hours before dawn.

Mars should be visible in the southeast, located just below the constellation of Sagittarius.

Meanwhile, the best vision of the phenomenon will be enjoyed in the southern hemisphere.

For example, the capital of New Zealand, Wellington, will enjoy a view of the red planet, as it reaches a maximum altitude of 74 degrees in the sky at the end of July.

For people who can not leave or those who have a view obstructed by cloudiness, the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles will broadcast an Internet broadcast for the heavenly event, which will be combined with expert comments.

"The closeness and brightness of Mars, plus the nearby location of Saturn (Mars and Saturn were in conjunction in early April) should make this a good thing to observe," said Dr. Birkinshaw.

In the days before Approaching Mars, the planet will be three times brighter in our sky than it normally is.

It will also eclipse Jupiter, registering as 1.8 times brighter in the night sky.

Mars will be up all night, rising after sunset and setting at dawn. Mars should be visible in the southeast, located just below the constellation of Sagittarius, with Saturn also close

Due to the variation between the orbits of the Earth and Mars, the opposition (in the image) can occur anywhere along the orbit of Mars. What makes this event so rare and significant is that it also occurs within a few weeks of the perihelion of Mars (the point in its orbit when it is closest to the sun). The graphic reconstruction shows the moment when Mars, Earth and The Sun are aligned

Due to the variation between the orbits of the Earth and Mars, the opposition (in the image) can occur anywhere along the orbit of Mars. What makes this event so rare and significant is that it also occurs within a few weeks of the perihelion of Mars (the point in its orbit when it is closest to the sun). The graphic reconstruction shows the moment when Mars, Earth and The Sun are aligned

Due to the variation between the orbits of the Earth and Mars, the opposition (in the image) can occur anywhere along the orbit of Mars. What makes this event so rare and significant is that it also occurs within a few weeks of the perihelion of Mars (the point in its orbit when it is closest to the sun). The graphic reconstruction shows the moment when Mars, Earth and The Sun are aligned

That means that Mars will temporarily become the fourth brightest object in the sky, ranking after sun, moon and Venus.

Mars will be awake all night, rising after sunset and setting just before dawn.

The opposition is a reasonably common occurrence, which occurs once every 26 months.

This is where the Earth is directly interspersed between the sun and Mars, similar to the way it aligns with the moon each month.

However, due to the variation between the orbits of Earth and Mars, opposition can occur anywhere along the orbit of Mars.

What makes this particular event so weird is that the position of the Earth between the red planet and the sun will occur within a few weeks of the perihelion of Mars, the point in its orbit when it is closest to the sun.

This coincidence, known as perihelic opposition, only occurs every 15 to 17 years.

The last time it happened was in 2003, and on that occasion the two planets were closer than they had been for almost 60,000 years.

During that opposition, Mars was only 34.65 million miles (55.76 million kilometers) from the surface of our planet. This exact level of proximity will not occur again until August 29, 2287, according to some estimates.

WHAT IS THE PERIOLIC OPPOSITION?

The Earth makes two trips around the sun in the same amount of time it takes Mars to make a trip.

This means that sometimes the two planets are on opposite sides of the sun, very far apart, and other times, the Earth reaches its neighbor and passes relatively close to it.

During the opposition, Mars and the sun are on opposite sides of the Earth.

The effect of the opposition is similar to the effect of the full moon seen once a month when the Earth is placed directly between our natural satellite and the sun.

Perehelia is when Mars is at the point of its orbit where it is closest to the sun.

This happens every 26 months or so, and because Mars has an increasingly elliptical orbit, the point of perihelia gets closer and closer to our star.

These two events rarely overlap, and a perihelic opposition occurs only once every 15 to 17 years.

The Earth makes two trips around the sun in the same amount of time that Mars takes to make a trip

The Earth makes two trips around the sun in the same amount of time that Mars takes to make a trip

The Earth makes two trips around the sun in the same amount of time that Mars takes to make a trip

While orbits are predictable to some extent, external variables such as the gravitational attraction around moons, stars and other planets mean that some perihelic oppositions bring us closer to our neighbor than others.

The orbit of the two planets is also slightly different.

The orbit of Mars is more elliptical than Earth's, so the difference between perihelion (the closest point to the sun) and aphelion (the farthest point from the sun) is much larger, varying around 26 million miles (43 million kilometers).

Scientists have discovered that for many centuries, the orbit of Mars is getting longer.

This means that the difference between perihelion and aphelion grows continuously.

This means that future perihelic oppositions will bring Earth and Mars closer together.

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